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Dig Deeper: Constitution Day

By Merrill Stein

Thursday, Sept. 17, is Constitution Day—celebrating the historic date in 1787 when the Constitutional Convention delegates signed the United States Constitution. Dig deeper and explore the resources below for a meaningful observance of the holiday.

Constitution related notes:

Dig deeper:


Merrill Stein is Political Science Librarian at Falvey Memorial Library.

 

 


 


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Dig Deeper: The 2020 Census

By Merrill Stein

Information about the U.S. Census can be obtained at https://2020census.gov. Beginning on March 12, 2020, you’ll be invited to respond to the 2020 Census. You can return to my2020census.gov to complete your questionnaire. To help you answer the census, the US Census Bureau provides translated web pages and guides in 59 non-English languages, including American Sign Language, as well as guides in braille and large print.

Be counted — Join the conversation!

  • By phone: Get assistance or respond by phone, starting March 9.
  • Online: Respond online at my2020census.gov, starting March 12.
  • By mail: Households will receive a paper questionnaire April 8–16.
  • At home: Census takers will visit households in person, beginning May 13.

What is the importance of census data? The 2020 Census will determine congressional representation, inform hundreds of billions in federal funding, and provide data that will impact communities for the next decade.

Shape your future, impact your community. The results of the 2020 Census will help determine how hundreds of billions of dollars in federal funding flow into communities every year for the next decade. That funding shapes many different aspects of every community, no matter the size, no matter the location.

Regional Census centers are available to help. Contact your regional census center to speak with U.S. Census Bureau staff in your area. Regional staff can help you verify the identity of a local census taker or connect you with your partnership specialist.

Want to dig deeper?


Merrill Stein is Political Science Librarian at Falvey Memorial Library.

 

 


 

 


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Dig Deeper: Rock Your Job Interview with These Resources

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By Linda Hauck

It’s career fair season, and Villanova’s Career Services is hosting its Spring Career Fair, Feb. 4 and 5. Remember to use Falvey’s resources to get yourself prepared for an interview with a potential employer and learn about career options!

If you’re interviewing for a functional job in an industry that you don’t know much about, it is always a good idea to get started by reading an industry report. Think of them like CliffsNotes guides to how businesses operate—except there is no shame in using them, because they are a staple for well-informed professionals. They describe the scope of the business and list suppliers, customers, competitive challenges, prospects, key competitors, the regulatory and technological environment, and trends.

In short, everything a curious prospective employee ought to know!

The industry reports offered by First Research even include a section called Executive Conversation Starters and Conversation Prep questions to spark dialog or, better yet, suggest topics to explore through news and social media before meeting. Similarly, IBISWorld iExpert Summaries list questions related to specific roles as well as internal/external impact. 

Of course, you will want to dig deeper and find out about the specific organization with which you’re interviewing. Company profiles that describe the scope of the business, provide some historical background, and list competitors and financial performance are a good place to start. MarketLine and D&B Hoovers cover medium to large organizations globally. Guidestar will do the same if you’re interviewing with a nonprofit.

Learn about more recent organizational developments by searching the news. Proquest Central provides good national coverage, whereas Philadelphia Business Journal (from American City Business Journals) offers more local news. Don’t forget use your New York Times and Wall Street Journal online subscriptions offered by the Library.

All of these databases can be found on the Falvey Career Information page, but don’t forget to explore the many online resources offered by the Career Center.

 


Linda Hauck, MLS, MBA, is the Business Librarian at Falvey Memorial Library.


 


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Dig Deeper: Jena Osman to Visit Falvey Nov. 1

Few and far between these days are the rare type of genius who have worked as a poet, a playwright, as the founder and editor of a journal, and as a professor of English. Jena Osman, who visits Falvey tonight, Nov. 1, at 6:00pm, fits this description perfectly.

Osman, who teaches in the creative writing program at Temple University, has also served as a fellow for the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, the Penn Humanities Forum, the MacDowell Colony, and the Howard Foundation. In the time since the staging of her play Face and Body in 1988, she has amassed an impressive corpus of published works, including four collections of poetry.

Jena Osman sits for a photograph.

Here are some of the resources available on and by Osman through Falvey’s databases:


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Dig Deeper: Literary Sensation Brit Bennett to Visit Falvey

As a part of the Villanova University Literary Festival, co-sponsored by the English Department, the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and the Falvey Memorial Library (among a slew of other departments), Brit Bennett will visit Speakers’ Corner on Tuesday, Feb. 14 at 7 p.m., providing you the perfect opportunity to bring your bae to a romantic evening of intellectual discussion and fiction reading.

The traditional “Dig Deeper” post includes a number of the author’s primary texts and a few scholarly articles for thinking through the author’s work. Bennett, however, as a new author presents a series of difficulties as far as building this kind of post goes.

Brit_BennettBrit Bennett poses for a photo.

First, her work is so new that scholars haven’t yet incorporated it into their theoretical pieces. Second, Bennett is very forthcoming about the aims and intentions of her work, especially so in her essays titled “I Don’t Know What to Do with Good White People” and “Ripping the Veil,” which means I can’t provide you with philosophical musings for thinking through what she might mean.

The novel itself ­– The Mothers – uses a fresh and much needed narrative voice to depict the black, middle-class life of its characters. According to an interview with Fusion, The Mothers took Bennett a long period of writing and re-writing to complete, and it mirrors her own life so far in a few crucial ways. Without spoiling anything too much, you should know that it’s available through interlibrary loan currently, and will arrive in the Falvey’s collection in the coming weeks.

Bennett herself was born and raised in southern California. She attended Stanford University, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in English. From there, she moved east to earn her MFA in fiction at the University of Michigan.

As a graduate student myself, I can tell you that the jump from graduate school success to gracing the pages of Vogue, Essence and the New York Times must have been one shocking journey. It all begins, however, with engagement.

Brit Bennett NYTBrit Bennett, as featured in The New York Times.

Bennett took a topic important to her – racial issues in America – and set herself to writing the most informed pieces about that topic. So far she has produced the “Good White People” piece from above and The Mothers (as well as a piece in The New Yorker praising the work of Ta-Nehisi Coates).

All of these pieces weave a fine strand through the young career of one of the literary world’s up-and-coming stars. Bennett’s central concern is the resolution of some of the racial issues plaguing 21st-century America. Here are a few links for you to dig deeper into the fields of race and trauma theory, curated by our English & Theatre Librarian, Sarah Wingo:

 


Website photo 2 Article by William Repetto, a graduate assistant on the Communications and Marketing Team at the Falvey Memorial Library. He is currently pursuing an MA in English at Villanova University.

 

 


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James Richardson, Poet, Kicks Off the Literary Festival

“The days are in order, the months, the seasons, the years. But the weeks are work. They have no names; they repeat.”
– James Richardson

Today, Jan. 31, James Richardson will visit Villanova University as part of the Literary Festival, co-sponsored by a host of organizations across campus including the English Department and the Falvey Memorial Library. A professor of creative writing at Princeton University, Richardson will talk about his newest collection, During, among other literary topics, during his visit to the Radnor/St. David’s Room in the Connelly Center at 7 pm.

James Richardson

Richardson’s career in the field of English literature began with his undergraduate education at Princeton University, where he graduated in 1971. From there he traveled to the University of Virginia to earn his MA and Ph.D., programs which he completed by 1975. For the next five years, Richardson taught at Harvard University as an assistant professor.

The majority of his academic career, however, has been spent at Princeton University, where he has served as a professor, a director of their creative writing program and as a seminar presenter. Richardson’s own creative work in poetry has brought him critical acclaim, and his unique voice and style have propelled him to the heights of literary accomplishment.

In addition to appearing in the New Yorker, Richardson’s work has appeared in various anthologies and collections published throughout the early 21st century. He’s also published a number of book-length works that contain both poetry and aphorisms. His books include As IfA Suite for Lucretians, and How Things Are; they are available through Interlibrary Loan.

By his own admission, Richardson’s aphorism writing started “more as a questionable habit” than the foundation for a career, but his work, of obvious cultural importance, has landed him in the lineup of this year’s Literary Festival. His presentation promises to be of as many philosophical, aesthetic and academic turns as his poetry, and we hope to see you there!

Dig Deeper:

Richardson-By-the-Numbers-150

Dig deeper with his additional works available through Falvey’s catalogue: By the Numbers, Interglacial and Reservations or by viewing his biography via the Gale Literature Resource Center.


william thumbnailArticle by William Repetto, a graduate assistant on the Communications and Marketing Team at the Falvey Memorial Library. He is currently pursuing an MA in English at Villanova University.


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Dig Deeper: Christians in the Contemporary Middle East Conference

Nova Conference: Middle East

Villanova University will host a conference on Dec. 5-6 titled Christians in the Contemporary Middle East: Religious Minorities and the Struggle for Secular Nationalism and Citizenship. With such wonderful speakers attending as Retired General Anthony Charles Zinni (USMC) and Ussama Makdisi of Rice University, the conference promises some elucidating conversation.

For a conference on such a particular subject, the presentations will cover a diverse range of topics. Attendees will hear such intriguing talks as “Christian Contributions to Art, Culture and Literature in the Arab-Islamic World” and “The Impact of the Shia-Sunni Political Struggle and Future Strategies for Christians and Other Minorities in the Middle East.”

Specialized lectures such as these sometimes require a little bit of background information, and some students may be wondering the relevance of these topics to their lives or academic development. I had similar questions and concerns and brought them up with Assistant Director of Academic Integration and Theology Librarian Darren Poley.

Screen Shot 2016-12-01 at 2.20.58 PM

(Cover of illustrated edition of Universal Declaration of Human Rights from website below)

 

“Religious liberty is not just an American or even an exclusively Western concept,” he began. “Freedom to practice one’s faith or belief system is an intrinsically human desire.”

Poley recommends taking a look at the UN’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights if you’re interested in why the Villanova University should be concerned about the Middle East. It’s available here, and Poley reminds you, “especially since we live in an increasingly interconnected and globalized society: no one can afford to ignore any lack of respect for people, property, social justice or the integrity of creation anywhere in the world.”

Dig Deeper by investing these associations, centers and initiatives for social justice:

“It surprises most students to learn that the Middle East and North African were predominantly Christian lands for the centuries between the official toleration of Christianity in the Roman Empire in the 4th century and the rise of Islam in the 7th century,” Poley continued.

Cartouche

(Villanova University’s Arabic Cartouche)

It’s important for Villanova students to think about the decline of pluralistic spaces in the Middle East because so many of these early Christian societies remain today, albeit under different leadership and sometimes different names.

“Nestorian Christians in the Middle East established themselves in the 5th century and continue as the Assyrian Church of the East.” Poley highlighted, and “there are many different Eastern Orthodox churches often along ethnic or national lines that are affiliated with the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople, a Turkish citizen who resides in Istanbul.”

Patriarchate Banner

(Banner for the Ecumenical Patriarchate – website below)

In addition, there are Catholics outside of the Latin Rite tradition. The Maronites of Lebanon, the Chaldeans of Iraq, and the Melkites from Syria, Jordan and Israel represent the largest groups of such.

Poley said, “There are also small groups of Christians in the Middle East with doctrinal differences from either the Catholic of the Eastern Orthodox churches, which are collectively called the Oriental Orthodox churches; the three major ones being the Syrian, Armenian, and Coptic (Egyptian).”

Despite the complexity of their histories, you may find statistics and information on the individuals and groups of Christians who continue to “live, work, worship, and coexist alongside Muslims and Jews in Middle Eastern countries,” according to Poley, at these websites:

An encyclopedia of knowledge on the topic, Poley provided me with an exhaustive list of thinkers, theologians and writers who have promoted religious diversity in the Middle East. I’ve included just a few of those thinkers below so that you may familiarize yourself with them before the conference:

  • Saint Pope John Paul II
  • Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI
  • Eastern Orthodox Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I
  • Catholic Patriarch Emeritus of Jerusalem Michel Sabbah
  • Latin Patriarchal Vicar for Jerusalem and Palestine William Shomali
  • Melkite Archbishop George Wadih Bakouni
  • Antiochian Orthodox Bishop George Khodr
  • Coptic Orthodox Bishop Barnibas El Soryany
  • Armenian Bishop of Damascus Armash Nalbandian
  • Father Kail C. Ellis, OSA, Villanova University.

Yes, that’s the abridged list. In case you were wondering if you should visit a subject librarian before collecting research for your next term paper: yes, you should. Poley, and indeed all of our subject librarians, work tirelessly to keep up-to-date on current events, research, and research methodologies.

Darren Poley resize

(This is what Darren Poley looks like, in case you go looking for him.)

They also keep tabs on the library collection and can direct you to books and journals available either here at the Falvey or through the library’s databases. I asked Poley: what library resources are available for students to learn about the prospects of and strategies for promoting piece in the Middle East?

He suggested looking at the Theology & Religious Studies and Cultural Studies subject guides and reading one, some, or all of the following:

For some students, including me, starting to read up on Middle Eastern Christianity would be difficult without some background on Middle Eastern geopolitics. I submitted the same question to Poley about library resources for looking at the geopolitical landscape of the Middle East. He suggested starting with the Political Science Subject Guide and the History Subject Guide, but also directed me to these books:

Mary Queen of Peace

(Mary Queen of Peace)

Speaking of the UN’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Poley said, “So in the middle of the 20th century, perhaps the bloodiest in history so far in terms of wars and other violence, people of good will came together to publically declare among other tenets that freedom of conscience and religion is a basic human right.” Described as “timely and riveting” by the university’s poster, this conference may be an excellent opportunity for the Villanova community to validate these tenets.


Website photo 2

Article by William Repetto, a graduate assistant on the Communications and Marketing Team at the Falvey Memorial Library. He is currently pursuing an MA in English at Villanova University.

 


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Dig Deeper: VuFind Summit 2016

Did you know that an innovative search engine used by libraries in numerous countries for browsing catalogs was developed right here at Villanova University? It’s called VuFind, and its open source coding allows for continued innovation by institutions and individuals throughout the world.

Some of the most important contributors are coming to Falvey Memorial Library this week, on Oct. 10 and 11, for VuFind Summit 2016. Registration has closed, but you can still attend the conference virtually on the Remote Participation section of the VuFind Summit webpage. Speaking of remote participation, this year’s VuFind Summit will feature a video conference with another VuFind Summit occurring concurrently in Germany.

The VuFind Summit 2015 group.

The VuFind Summit 2015 group.

This year’s conference includes speakers such as Andrew Nagy, Leila Gonzales and Bob Haschart, among others. Nagy, one of the developers involved in starting the VuFind project here at Villanova, will be giving a talk on his new FOLIO project. FOLIO is another open source project that will integrate VuFind as it attempts to help libraries work together in new ways.

Gonzales has devised a method for using VuFind for geographical data. On her map interface, a user can draw a shape and pull full records from the designated space. Her talk features a brainstorming session for thinking up new features and applications for her software. Haschart will discuss his new SolrMarc software, which includes “extended syntax, faster indexing with multi-threading, easier customization of Java indexing code” (from Summit website above).

VuFind Summit could not be promoted, nor indeed occur, without speaking of Demian Katz. He is the VuFind Project Manager who has worked here at the Falvey Memorial Library since 2009. Demian brings the conference together each year and has even published scholarly articles on the topic of VuFind. Anyone who has spoken to him, or heard him lecture, can easily detect his passion for innovative technologies and how the user engages with them. His talk will focus on the innovations made since last year’s VuFind Summit, and he will participate heavily in mapping out the next year’s innovations.

Demian Katz lectures at VuFind Summit 2015

Demian Katz lectures at VuFind Summit 2015.

I know, on a personal level, that if you aren’t a coder, then this event might not seem pertinent to you. I encourage you, however, to check out the live stream or the YouTube videos that will be posted subsequently. Not many universities can list “developed an internationally renowned search engine” on their curriculum vitae. VuFind is part of what makes Villanova University a top 50 college in the country; VuFind is part of your daily research experience here at Villanova. It’s certainly worthwhile to give attention to those specialists who make VuFind a reality.


Website photo 2

Article by William Repetto, a graduate assistant on the Communications and Marketing Team at the Falvey Memorial Library. He is currently pursuing an MA in English at Villanova University.

 

 


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Dig Deeper: Elizabeth Kolbert

Elizabeth Kolbert will be visiting the Falvey Memorial Library today, Sept. 22, at 1:30pm to sign copies of her One Book Villanova selection The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History. As good academics, you will note that this book was published over two years ago now. While the academic community’s excitement over the book has not subsided, ecological and geopolitical realities have continued to change – and Kolbert has not stopped bringing these realities to her readers’ attention.

BOOK COVER SIXTH EXTINCTION

Cover of this year’s One Book selection.

Kolbert’s main platform for discussing climate change, among other environmental and scientific topics, is The New Yorker magazine. She has been a staff writer for that publication since 1999, and following her three-part series “The Climate of Man” (from 2006), her notoriety as a critic of global warming has only increased. Since the 2014 publication of The Sixth Extinction her work has focused on conservation and rising water levels, check out these New Yorker articles as a sampling of her work:

Save the Elephants

Rough Forecasts

The Siege of Miami

Eliz Kolbert Headshot

Elizabeth Kolbert

While these works give a good glimpse into Kolbert’s life work, The Sixth Extinction remains her most popular piece. She has given a number of interviews on the book, linked below, including an extremely high profile interview on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart:

Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists

The Daily Show

These five pieces, plus The Sixth Extinction, should get you up-to-date for asking some intelligent questions at today’s book signing! Make sure to check out Kolbert’s twitter as well (@ElizKolbert); she tends to tweet and retweet the newest statistics regarding the climate and global populations. Enjoy these reads, and we look forward to seeing you at today’s events!


Website photo 2

Article by William Repetto, a graduate assistant on the Communications and Marketing Team at the Falvey Memorial Library. He is currently pursuing an MA in English at Villanova University.

 

 

 

 


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Dig Deeper: Spotlight on Bolivia

By now, I’m sure you’re aware of the upcoming talk on Bolivian popular culture as part of Hispanic Heritage Month.

Bolivia Talk Poster

But you might not know that the library maintains a number of resources for you to read up on current developments in Bolivia. Through ProQuest and ProQuest Newsstand, you can find a number of recent magazine and news articles that do not require you to be scholar or expert on Bolivian history and culture to understand.

Take a peak at these pieces to catch up:

Bill Gates Sparks Bolivian Controversy

Term Limit becomes a Hot Topic in Bolivia

IDB Approves Large Humanitarian Project in Bolivia

A Student’s Bolivian Adventure

These articles highlight several topics that may be interesting to bring up at tonight’s lecture. Does international attention aid in improving Bolivia? Or does it subvert the nation’s own popular culture? Are the leaders of Bolivia taking advantage of their positions? Or are outside pressures preventing them from effective governance?

You might find the answers to these questions and many more at tonight’s presentation, In Search of Popular Culture in the Bolivian Nation Building Process, by Villanova professor Dr. Jaime Omar Salinas Zabalaga. The Romance Languages Department and the Latin American Studies Program co-sponsor this event with the Falvey Memorial Library.


Website photo 2 Article by William Repetto, a graduate assistant on the Communications and Marketing Team at the Falvey Memorial Library. He is currently pursuing an MA in English at Villanova University.

 

 

 


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Last Modified: September 15, 2016